Subhankar Dey: The unheralded Indian shuttler who got past Lin Dan

Indian shuttler Subhankar Dey has earned the spotlight by defeating two-time Olympic gold-medallist Lin Dan in the SaarLorLux Open Badminton Championship.

Subhankar Dey reached a career-best ranking of 43 in March this year.   -  BWF Website

Unheralded Indian shuttler Subhankar Dey achieved the seemingly improbable feat at the SaarLorLux Open Badminton Championship held in Saarbrucken, Germany on Thursday.

The current World No. 64 had fled home during his late teens to pursue a career in badminton and Thursday's triumph has flung him into global spotlight, a relatively new experience for him.

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Subhankar made headlines last year when he put up a gritty display to edge past B. Sai Praneeth in the quarterfinals of the senior badminton nationals held in Nagpur. While he lost to H. S. Prannoy in the semifinals, the win over Praneeth ensured he was being talked about.

He got off to a fine start in 2018 when he finished runner-up in the Kabal International tournament in Czech Republic in March. The second place finish propelled him to a career-high ranking of 43.

While that remains his best achievement until the win against Dan, he had a string of decent results, reaching the quarterfinals of the Russian Open and Czech Open and making his way to the semifinals of the Belgian Open.

He will next face England's Toby Penty in the semifinals of the SaarLorLux and if he can stage a win, it would propel him to his second final of the year. And needless to say, it would also do a world of good to his ranking and popularity.